Robert Leighton’s New Book; The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue Of September 2, 2019; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Robert Leighton’s New Book: Just out from Workman, Puzzlelopedia, by long-time New Yorker cartoonist and puzzle meister, Robert Leighton (with fellow Puzzability team members Amy Goldstein and Mike Shink). Spill visitors might remember this piece on one of Mr. Leighton’s classic New Yorker drawings (below).

Here’s Mr. Leighton’s entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

Robert Leighton Born May 23, 1960, Long Island, NY. A puzzle writer as well as a cartoonist, Leighton is one of three partners who founded the puzzle-writing company, Puzzability. See: The New Yorker Book of Cartoon Puzzles and Games (Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, 2006), authored by Puzzability. Mr. Leighton’s New Yorker work: 2002 – .  Website: https://www.robert-leighton.com/

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                   The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue Of September 2, 2019

                         The Cover: Here’s Kadir Nelson on his latest cover (titled “Heat Wave”).

                         The Cartoonists & Cartoons:

Maggie Larson’s name isn’t listed above, so I’m mentioning her here as she contributes a two-column wide color Sketchpad drawing titled “The Subway Valley Floor.” Eighteen pages later is a  full page color Liana Finck Sketchbook contribution,“Some Relationship Models” (Ms. Finck’s name appears on the Table of Contents).

There are but nine single panel cartoon contributions in this issue (I think most would agree that Ms. Larson’s and Ms. Finck’s drawings fall outside of that classification by virtue of their assigned haedings). Illustrations, as has been the case in modern times, occupy more graphic real estate than the cartoons.  There are sixteen of them (including photographs), including four full pages.

                     Rea Irvin’s Talk Masthead: Switched out in May of 2017 for a redrawn version, Mr. Irvin’s iconic Talk masthead (shown below) sadly continues to collect dust. Read about it here.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Tim Hamilton on G7.  Mr. Hamilton began contributing to The New Yorker in 2016. Visit his website here.

 

 

 

The Tilley Watch: The New Yorker 94th Anniversary Issue; Today’s New Yorker Daily Cartoonist: Julia Suits

The very first issue.

The above cover does not appear on the New Yorker‘s 94th Anniversary issue; note the date and price. I’ve posted it — the very first New Yorker cover — because sentimental me misses seeing Rea Irvin’s iconic curiously curious Eustace Tilley, dressed in his oddly compelling finery. He hasn’t shown up since 2011 (below)…that seems like such a long time for him to be away. Sometimes it’s good to go back, before, you know, you drift too far from shore (to read about Kadir Nelson’s Tilley-inspired take-off on the cover of the current issue, go here).

The 86th anniversary issue


The Cartoonists:

The Cartoons:

It has made my week seeing George Booth’s drawing in the issue (p.47). It’s classic Booth. And no small thing, it inhabits the perfect space on the page — it is where it should be and it looks as it should look. And… it looks great. I could, and will, say the same for Edward Koren’s drawing (p.80).

Two of our cartoon gods delivering the goods, continuing to share their worlds, a half century or more since they began contributing to The New Yorker (Mr. Koren began in 1962, Mr. Booth in 1969).

Of interest to the weedsy cartoon folks: there is not just one caption-less cartoon in the issue — there are three (Seth Fleishman, Will McPhail, and Ed Steed). By caption-less, I should clarify that I mean a cartoon that appears without assistance from words in a box, or a title, or a thought balloon.

Finally, I end as I began: by mentioning the work of The New Yorker artist Rea Irvin. His beautiful masthead — the one that ran for most of the magazine’s 94 years but went missing in the Spring of 2017 (read about it here) is also still out of sight this anniversary week (well, two weeks, as it’s a double issue). It appears here once again, as it always does on Mondays, until someone tells me to cut it out (so to speak) or until it reappears in the magazine (and wouldn’t that be great).

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Today’s Daily Cartoon

Today’s Daily cartoon (Trumpish, of course) is by Julia Suits, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 2006. Link here to her website.

The Monday Tilley Watch, the New Yorker Issue of September 10, 2018; Cartoon Happenings At The New Yorker Festival

 “The Style Issue”  with a Kadir Nelson cover — the second Nelson cover in three weeks. It’s titled “Savoring Summer” (and again, I question why the New Yorker‘s covers need to be titled. Shouldn’t covers speak for themselves, so to speak? This cover certainly does). 

The cartoons:

Thinking there’d be a bevy of cartoonists in this mid-September issue (last week’s issue had fourteen), it was a surprise finding nine single panel cartoons this week (there’s a multi-panel “Sketchbook” by Roz Chast).  

Lately the Monday Tilley Watch has moved away from looking at every cartoon in each issue, but that doesn’t mean each and every cartoon in each and every issue doesn’t receive my undivided attention. Often I look at a cartoon like I eat popcorn.  But sometimes I linger on a particular drawing, savoring the art, or the caption (if there is a caption); in the best of times, I linger because I’m happy to be looking at something that works, that really works.  Other times I linger out of puzzlement — wondering what I’ve missed about the drawing — how, to my eyes, it went awry (or how my cultural antenna have failed me). It is far more exciting to come across a drawing that soars than one that fails.  Take for instance Joe Dator’s three part Beauty and the Beast cartoon in this new issue. I believe the drawing hits the high bar.  It’s drawn well (it reminds me of Lee Lorenz’s confident energetic art), and it measures up to Peter Arno’s characterization of a good cartoon, landing a one-two punch. A Spill round of applause is in order.

Some impressions from the issue:  Frank Cotham’s cartoon — it leads off the issue, sitting in a good-sized space following the Table Of Contents.  I mentioned Mr. Lorenz’s confident drawing; in Mr. Cotham’s quarter century of contributing to the New Yorker, he’s shown no fear in taking on the big picture, and handling it well. Alex Gregory’s line (his drawing is on p.93) is always a welcome sight.  Ed Steed’s bee-hive wielding doctor drawing (p.55) seems like a follow-up to Zach Kanin’s memorable “I can feel the baby kicking” cartoon from 2008.

The Caption Contest:

Cartoon caption contest drawings aren’t mentioned here much, but I did note that Mick Stevens’ drawing this week echoes one of mine (captioned as you see) published in The New Yorker, August 23, 1982.

Finally, let us not forget Rea Irvin’s missing classic Talk Of The Town masthead. I sometimes picture it propped up in a closest someplace in the magazine’s offices, waiting to be rediscovered and returned to its proper place. Until that time, if it ever comes, here it is:

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Cartoon Happenings at The New Yorker Festival

Held October 5, 6, and 7th. So far, here’s what’s up at the festival, cartoon-wise:

Saturday, the 6th: Sh!t Show: A Parenting Comedy Revue (with, among others, Emily Flake, and Roz Chast).

Sunday, the 7th: Cartoons & Coffee (with Hilary Fitzgerald Campbell and Farley Katz)

Here’s the homepage for the Festival

 

 

 

The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue of August 27th, 2018

  Kadir Nelson‘s cover (a tribute to Aretha Franklin) was posted last week.  Not mentioned here at the time (but noted on the New Yorker‘s Table of Contents): the image was inspired by Charles W. White’s Folksinger. 

The new issue’s “Fall Preview” accounts for the abundance of arts ads and illustrations. 

The cartoons:

Now we’re talkin’: sixteen cartoons in this issue vs last week’s nine.  A number of the sixteen cartoons stand out for various reasons. Two of them (I won’t single them out) are beyond me. Not long ago I would’ve emailed Jack Ziegler to explain them to me. It was always comforting when Jack didn’t understand a drawing either. Often he’d respond with a variation of, “I don’t know what the hell it means.”

 Now for some others that stood out (these I understand): Seth Fleishman‘s mirror ball drawing cements his reputation as the New Yorker‘s mirror ball guy. Funny drawing. Also very funny: Joe Dator‘s “hunny” sniffing Pooh airport scenario. And then there’s David Borchart‘s sea-faring koala drawing. Oh my my my. I mentioned Jack Ziegler before. I think Jack would’ve loved these drawings — they’re wonderfully in his ballpark of way-out-there. A Spill round of applause.

A thought here about the placement of every cartoon in the issue: none seemed pressed for space, in need of breathing room. Victoria Roberts doctor’s office drawing (p.69) and Ellis Rosen‘s (p.42) are good examples. The reader can really enjoy the fine drawing going on in these pieces (and in others).

This issue includes the debut New Yorker cartoon by Caitlin Cass. Ms. Cass is the seventeenth new cartoonist brought in since cartoon editor, Emma Allen was appointed in the Spring of 2017. Ms. Cass’s style — mostly the way she handles faces — reminds me of a New Yorker cover artist from the Golden Age: Christina Malman.  Oddly enough, while looking through Ms. Malman’s twenty-four covers for the magazine I came across one (shown below) thematically linked to Ms. Cass’s drawing of children looking at art in a museum.

A final thought before Rea Irvin’s classic missing masthead shows up at the end of this post: I’m wondering if Emma Hunsinger‘s funny caption for her drawing on page 77 would’ve also worked if the word “aren’t” was “are”…and if that’s so — if it’s so how often it happens in cartoon captions that a word completely flipped can still work with the drawing. In this case, substituting “are” for “aren’t” would radically change the intent. Ms. Hunsinger’s use of the word “aren’t” suggests the parents are concerned their child’s behavior is unusual. By using “are” the parents would instead be hopeful that their child’s behavior might make for a viral video.

For the record, here is the list of cartoonists in this issue:

And now, as promised, the missing Irvin masthead.

 — See you next week

 

 

 

Fave Photo of the Day: Cartoonists Celebrate Sam Gross’s Birthday; Early Release: Next Week’s New Yorker Cover; Cartoon Companion Dissects the Very Latest New Yorker Cartoons

Fave Photo of the Day: Cartoonists Celebrate Sam Gross’s Birthday

Cartoonists gathered on Manhattan’s upper east side on Thursday to celebrate Cartoon God, Sam Gross, who turned 85 on August 7th.  Clockwise from the lower left: Robert Leighton, Bob Eckstein, Maria Scrivan, Nick Downes, Marisa Acocella, Sam Gross, Roz Chast, and Tracey Berglund. 

–photo courtesy of Bob Eckstein

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Early Release: Next Week’s New Yorker Cover

Read what Kadir Nelson, the cover artist for next week’s issue, had to say about his Aretha Franklin tribute.

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Cartoon Companion Dissects the Very Latest New Yorker Cartoons

The CC boys are back with their ratings for this week’s cartoons (the issue of August 20th).  Julia Suits was awarded the CC‘s Top Toon ribbon. Read it all here!